Deciding Between Laser and Wrinkle Fillers (Can Only Afford One). Which Works Better?

I'm trying to decide which procedure will produce the best result on lines around my mouth. I can afford to have Profractional laser work done or Radiesse filler, but not both. Suggestions?

Doctor Answers 11

Laser vs. Radiesse

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Without seeing you it would be difficult to give you the best advice.  Generally speaking, for the vertical upper lip lines ("smoker lines" as they are affectionately termed), I would suggest laser resurfacing  treatment or some type of fractional laser treatment (in combination with Botox ideally for most patients).  I wouldn't use Radiesse as my first choice for the lines around the of the HA fillers (Restylane/Juvederm) may be better for you in that area.


Dr. Grant Stevens              Marina del Rey, CA             Marina Plastic Surgery             The Institute

Smoker's Lines? Laser or Filler?

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Hi Elisabetta.  If the lines you are speaking about are the ones commonly referred to as "smoker's lines", the small vertical lines around the lips above and below the mouth, then we would not suggest Radiesse.  If those lines are your issue then laser resurfacing would provide a safer and longer lasting result than Radiesse.  Botox will also help to relax the muscles in this area and smooth these lines.

If the lines you are speaking about are the nasolabial folds (the lines between corners of nose and corners of mouth) then lasers would not be a good option and the Radiesse (or Restylane, Juvederm, Perlane) would be an excellent option.

Harold J. Kaplan, MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Laser vs. Wrinkle Fillers

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In deciding which will work better, it is likely that the laser will have a longer lasting and more aesthetic result for your wrinkles.                  

Radiesse for perioral wrinkles around the mouth

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I would advise you to do neither.  Jowls and perioral wrinkles may require more than one treatment.  If you cannot afford it at the moment, I would advise you to wait so that you can complete the treatment for perfect results.

Laser Resurfacing versus Wrinkle Fillers

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Laser resurfacing will help with the quality of skin and improve fine to medium depth lines (think of it as the paint job on you house).

Wrinkle fillers can fill the wrinkles but do not change the quality of skin.

My recommendation is to get the laser, and then continue with a healthy life style (no smoking, no sun tanning, exercise, etc.).  You may also require Botox for animation lines on your upper face.  These lines will return if not blocked by Botox.  I also recommend Retin-A use daily as it will keep your skin healthier (please check with your doctor first).

Unfortunately, there are no one time fixes when it comes to skin care.

Michael A. Jazayeri, MD
Santa Ana Plastic Surgeon

Laser vs radiesse

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the laser will help with the small lines around the lips and the filler will work best for the smile lines or nasolabial folds. You will need some down time after the laser procedure and some post procedure care. There is relatively no down time for the radiesse.

My vote: laser

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Radiesse is a great filler, but not my first choice for fine perioral lines. Laser resurfacing (I use Active/Deep FX) gives a more durable result. A little Botox may complement the results of the resurfacing and cost very little.

Perioral lines

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The upper lip vertical lines respond better to resurfacing but will still be there because of the muscle movement. Smile creases respond better to filler such as Radiesse.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Laser versus fillers

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In general, laser is good for fine lines and wrinkles, fillers for moderate wrinkles and surgery for moderate to severe wrinkles.  Also, areas with thin skin, such as the eyelids, laser is a better option since fillers may leave obvious lumps.  Radiesse is a great filler for the cheeks and around the mouth.  Juvederm is a great filler for the lips and the nasolabial folds.  Good luck.

Laser or Filler for Lines Around the Mouth

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Hi E,

If you have to choose between filler and laser for lines around the mouth, I would go with the Profractional laser.  I would question your treating physician as Radiesse is contra-indicated for use on lines around the mouth, other fillers are preferred and do not result in lumps and bumps.  As always, choose your treating physician most carefully.  Good luck and be well.

Dr. P

Michael A. Persky, MD
Encino Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.